Wednesday, October 27, 2010

ColorFest Aftermath

Boxley Church

Well, the Ponca ColorFest is over for another year!  It was certainly bigger this year than I remember last year being.  The colors were not quite as vibrant as last year due to the drought this summer but they were so much better in the Ozarks than here in central Arkansas! 

Above is the old historic church and community center in Boxley Valley.  The left hand side of the building is obviously being refurbished, making what is usually one of the signature photo ops in the area less picturesque than usual.

We didn't get any pictures of the elk herd this year.  I guess a full moon kept them out feeding throughout the nights and we just weren't up early enough to catch them in the fields in the valley.

Elk Education Center Grounds

I was pretty much skunked on Friday and got very frustrated at my painting efforts.  I'm so much more comfortable in my studio where I can take my time.  It just seems when I'm outside and possibly more precisely when there are people around, that I cannot focus and lose my ability to "see" the painting in the subject.  I do have a hard time believing it's the potential audience though as I've painted from photo in front of people on numerous occasions.  While it IS more difficult, it isn't as terribly frustrating as painting en plein air!  It's like my brain shuts off and nothing works right.  I've been told by several artists that plein air work will advance my skills in the studio and I'm sure that it could except for the fact that plein air painting makes me feel ham handed.  Arkansas League of Artists has started their plein air group back up.  I need to decide if I'm going to pursue painting with them.

Despite my frustration with my own personal painting, I had a very good time watching Bill Garrison paint.  Bill and his wife Gloria both did some fantastic work during the event.  Below is Bill in the early stages of a painting of a bucket of flowers.  Below that is the same piece approaching some latter stages along with his subject.  Behind that on the table are two fabulous pieces he did the day before.  One is of the creek behind the Elk Education Center and the other is the Buffalo River near the Ponca low water bridge.  I wish I had gotten closer pictures of both of those.

Bill Garrison working on some flowers

Getting there!

Winston Taylor with a raku piece he had just fired

Yours truly making a mess again

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Red Rock Point and ColorFest 2010

Red Rock Point, Eastern Face
8X10, Oil on Board

Here's another view from Newton County. Red Rock Point is near Mt. Judea and is one of my favorite locations in the state. This imposing piece of rock is said to be one of the finest pieces of sandstone for climbing between Appalachia and the Rockies.

I'm posting yet another view from Newton County because that's where I'll be tomorrow for ColorFest.  I'll be on the other side of the county from Red Rock Point in Ponca however.  The event is at the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission Elk Education Center from 10AM to 4:30PM, October 22 and 23.  Come on out and visit if you have time and are in the vicinity!  As Chris suggested a couple of months ago, I'll be checking out the town of Nail on the way!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Cameron Bluff, North Rim Mt. Magazine, Logan County

Cameron Bluff, Mt. Magazine
5X7 Oil on Wood

 Yesterday, we took a drive west to Logan County.  There were a few stops I had planned on making.  The view above was the last of the day.  Prior to this we visited Subiaco Academy and Abbey, the town of Paris Arkansas, and Short Mountain north of the Paris.

Mt. Magazine is the tallest peak in the state with a maximum elevation of 3753ft ASL.  It technically sits in the Arkansas River Valley.  Geologically speaking, I'm not sure if Magazine fits more with the Ouachita Mountains or the Ozarks.   It is certainly closer to the Ouachitas physically but to me "feels" more like the Ozarks with more prototypical horizontal rock strata like that in the Ozarks.  Mt. Magazine is part of a complex of mountains that includes Petit Jean and Mt. Nebo, both further to the east.  There are quite a number of species of fauna which are found on Mt. Magazine and nowhere else in the world.  Most of these are small, like insects.

Recently, Stapleton Kearns did a study in near complements, or split complentary color schemes.  I thought I might give this a try upon his encouragement to follow along at home.  So, I uncorked it on Mt. Magazine with shadowed rock faces and the very start of changing leaves.  It was getting later in the afternoon and the eastern facing rocks were shadowed with raking light spilling over onto the trees below.  There was a blush of subtle orange here and there.
Cameron Bluff, Mt. Magazine

I sat up in the shade of a cedar tree, looking through a nice framing hole in the canopy.  Now, I will be totally up front about this, I cheated a fair bit on my color scheme.  I used Cobalt violet, Sap green, and 2 oranges, one a nice russet made with vermillion and yellow ochre, the other a brilliant orange with vermillion and cad yellow.  I did not use a "yellow green" so that was cheat number 1.  Cheat number 2 was allowing myself to brighten the scene considerably with a higher value yellow.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

AGFC ColorFest 2010

I will be at the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission ColorFest on October 22 and 23 at the Elk Education Center in Ponca, AR.  I was thrilled to learn that one of my favorite Arkansas based artists, Mr. Bill Garrison will be there also this year!  Hopefully, I'll be able to take some time out of my painting to watch him and learn from that experience.  Winston Taylor will be raku firing pottery on location.  That's always fascinating to see.  If you happen to be free, please come by and visit!

I have some new work I'm working on that I hope to show soon but as always, I will make sure it meets my expectations at least, and I am my own worst critic a good deal of the time.